Korean people love their karaoke, because here it’s not wasted people embarrassing themselves in front of strangers. To properly karaoke in Korea, I had to go to a noraebang- a cross between a bar, an arcade, and a motel, where patrons rent rooms by the hour or half hour just to karaoke. Noraebangs come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from the exceedingly expensive, bottle service-required noraebangs of Gangnam, to the veritable equivalent of an American dive bar.
I had been hear three months before I finally answered the siren song of the noraebang. The other American teachers and I decided to do December 23rd right by drinking soju and singing “Let it Go” and “All the Small Things” at the top of our lungs at the hilariously overdecorated Queen’s Avenue noraebang in our neighborhood. We were technically not allowed to bring in our own soju, but it was sort of like movie theater rules- as long as we were at least trying to be discreet, management was not going to bother us.
We were also provided with props, which is standard fare for a noraebang. I’m wearing the blue wig, my friend chose the jester’s cap.
We left Queen’s Avenue still singing and a little tipsy. Karaoke-ing for once, has completely won my heart.